Cricket, along with rugby, has always been a very popular sport in Australia. It continues to gain in popularity each and every year. In fact, in the next four-year cycle the sport is expected to reach A$1.08 billion in revenue. That is an incredible amount but comparing it to the current A$684 million makes it even more astonishing. All of this equates to about a 63% growth in revenue over the next four years.
As a side note, the estimates are always done on four-year cycles because so much of the annual revenue is dependent on which national teams come to make a tour of Australia. A match against England would naturally generate more revenue than a match against many of the other nations in the world. The betting on games like this also increases, such is the excitement behind big matches such as this.
Growth without Stellar Performance
What’s even more compelling is that the country is experiencing this revenue growth even with rather lacklustre performances. The team has struggled in recent matches against England, but the popularity has not diminished one bit. Most people believe that it should not take long for the team to turn it around though.
So how has Cricket Australia been so successful on the revenue side? Well, one way they have done this is that they have been very successful at managing their broadcasting rights. Nearly two thirds of the projected revenue is now coming from the revenues generated from the broadcasting rights that were sold.
More and more Australians are tuning into the cricket matches so that number will surely go up the next time the broadcasting rights are up for negotiation. If Cricket Australia can just get back to their winning ways, there is no telling how much they can grow the brand. Worldwide broadcasting would be the next giant leap in terms of potential revenue generation for Cricket Australia.
Cricket is a sport that is enjoyed on a subcontinental level. In many of the smaller countries, it is the national pastime. In other countries, it may not be the national sport, but it certainly has the same loyal following. Practically every country in the world participates in this sport at least to some degree and now the Vatican has joined the mix!
Cricket In The Vatican
In a surprising turn of events, not only did the Vatican form their own cricket club, which was named the St. Peter’s Cricket Club, but the team went on to challenge the Church of England’s cricket club to a match at Lord’s. It’s a holy cricket match that will surely catch the eye of the entire world. Officials are absolutely ecstatic at how popular the sport is and the response that they are getting.
The original idea to form a Vatican sponsored cricket club was pretty simple. They wanted to give their priests, as well as seminarians, an alternative option for any sporting desires. In addition to that, it gives the Vatican an opportunity to communicate to the world in a different way. In essence, it is a new way to engage with the other religious denominations of the world. Even though Pope Francis prefers football, it’s only a matter of time before he gets behind the idea.
The Vatican’s match with the Church of England and possible future matches will be scheduled around September of every year. The reason for this is that this is a time of holiday for the seminarians. It will give everyone the opportunity to participate in the event.
Further initiatives are happening around the world as different religious denominations are forming their own cricket clubs. Everyone is seeing the potential here to create a type of sporting diplomacy. What all of the church officials hope for is that this sport can actually help to unite the different religions by using the sport of cricket as the binding force.
This is not something that should be a surprise to anyone, and it is not limited to just the Australian cricket players. It is actually something that happens all over the world and in all sports. When a sport gains in popularity the natural reaction by the owners and managers is to schedule more matches. More matches mean more revenue. The downside to all of this is that it can be taxing to the athlete both mentally and physically.
Australian cricket players have recently voiced their concerns over the scheduling and firmly believe that it is reducing their level of performance on the field. Currently the Australian cricket players have to navigate league play, in season tournaments, test team matches all at the same time. All of this means unfavourable time slots for the players and the players are speaking out on these issues.
Exhausted With No Backup
Players are worn out and their substitutes or replacements are often not capable of performing on the same level, at least not yet. Combine the tired players with lesser performing substitutes or replacement players and it is a recipe for disaster. The question here is whether the owners and officials will listen to these voiced concerns.
The good thing is that all of this is coming from the Australian Cricketers’ Association. That means that they have enough substance to garner a diplomatic approach. They accomplish this by putting together documentation of the facts. None of this information is available to the public other than that the report is indeed being taken seriously.
As the sport of cricket continues to grow, there will be more disputes between the players and managers. In the past, the managers have been overly sensitive to criticism. Now they are learning to take the criticism so that they can work with the players to grow the sport in a healthy way.